Red Azalea by Anchee Min

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Synopsis

Red Azalea is Anchee Min’s celebrated memoir of growing up in the last years of Mao’s China. As a child, she was asked to publicly humiliate a teacher; at seventeen, she was sent to work at a labor collective. Forbidden to speak, dress, read, write, or love as she pleased, she found a lifeline in a secret love affair with another woman. Miraculously selected for the film version of one of Madame Mao’s political operas, Min’s life changed overnight. Then Chairman Mao suddenly died, taking with him an entire world. A revelatory and disturbing portrait of China, Anchee Min’s memoir is exceptional for its candor, its poignancy, its courage, and for its prose which Newsweek calls "as delicate and evocative as a traditional Chinese brush painting."
 

About Anchee Min

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Anchee Min was born in Shanghai in 1957. At seventeen she was sent to a labor collective, where a talent scout for Madame Mao’s Shanghai Film Studio recruited her to work as a movie actress. She moved to the United States in 1984. Her first memoir, Red Azalea, was an international bestseller, published in twenty-seven countries. She has since published six novels, including Empress Orchid, Becoming Madame Mao, and, most recently, Pearl of China.
 
Published February 23, 2011 by Anchor. 324 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment, History, Travel, Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction, Children's Books, Political & Social Sciences, Action & Adventure. Non-fiction

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Min then has the opportunity to escape the farm and compete for the starring role in comrade Jiang Ching's movie of Madam Mao's latest opera, Red Azalea.

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Entertainment Weekly

''She said she could chop my head in two like chopping a watermelon.'' As this vast, incredible autobiography of a Communist Chinese immigrant unfolds, the ax- wielding neighbor becomes Min's smallest problem.

Mar 25 1994 | Read Full Review of Red Azalea

The Independent

Can you think of what that means?' Without waiting for my reply Secretary Chain concluded: 'It is obvious that Autumn Leaves thinks that you can be educated into her type, her father's type, the Imperialists' type.' I had been set up as a model by Autumn Leaves to influence the others.

Oct 17 1993 | Read Full Review of Red Azalea

The Independent

Anchee Min was eight when the Red Guards were unleashed, but had been looking after her three siblings from the age of five since her parents, like everyone else's, were out at work all day.

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People

Two years later she returned to Shanghai to compete with three other women for the title role in Red Azalea, a film project based on the revolution, written by Mao's wife.

May 02 1994 | Read Full Review of Red Azalea

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